If you follow most of the tech blogs then no doubt you have been flooded with information regarding the release of the Samsung Galaxy S IV, and with good reason. The S IV is the followup to the most successful Android handset in history, the Galaxy S III and it offers some pretty nice improvements that will surely make Samsung fans happy.
But the Android world doesn't revolve around the South Korean manufacturer and there are plenty of other companies that do offer some perfectly acceptable smartphones for those of you who don't feel like hopping on the Galaxy S IV bandwagon. Once such company is Sony, who's Xperia line of devices are no slouches themselves.
Slipping in under the radar yesterday was the FCC approval of the Sony Xperia ZL. This device which is a close relative of the manufacturer's flagship the Xperia Z was first shown off to the masses in January at CES.
This bit of information should be welcomed news for consumers hopeful to obtain this device and buck the Samsung trend. This US version of the Xperia ZL will run on LTE bands 2, 4, 5 and 17, as well as HSPA over 1900, 1700, and 850MHz frequencies. AT&T customers should recognize those specifications as the same ones that the carrier supports.
There are no hard release dates or pricing for US customers as of yet, however there have been confirmations for both the Canadian and parts of the European markets that an April release is imminent. Additionally the speculated price point for the Xperia ZL will run you $700 off contract with prices ranging between $150 - $200 after signing an agreement with a carrier.
For those of you who may need a refresher on the Sony Xperia ZL, here are the more interesting stats for the smartphone:
- 5-inch 1080p display; "shatter-proof sheet on scratch-resistant glass"
- 1.5GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor
- 2GB of RAM
- 13MP rear-facing camera; 2MP front-facing camera
- 16GB internal storage; Expandable via MicroSD card slot, up to 64GB
- 2370mAh battery
- Android 4.1.2; Upgradeable to Android 4.2
Odds are we won't be hearing much more of this device from AT&T until at least some of the media swarm has died down on the Galaxy S IV, but this isn't a device that should be overlooked. So keep an eye out in the next couple of weeks because with April right around the corner AT&T will more than likely be following the rest of the world's schedule.